Corbett Barr

Lifestyle Business Weekly

Quick Question: Are You Planning to Earn a Living Online or Off?

Today I just have a quick question for you. I tend to write a lot about earning a living online here at Free Pursuits because that’s where I personally work. However, I know that some of you reading this also have lifestyle design plans that involve an “offline” job like teaching, guiding tours, etc.

I would really appreciate if you let me know your plans in the comments. Just a quick answer of online or offline with some brief details would be great. If you’re already earning a living in a way that will or does support your ideal lifestyle, you can comment about what that currently is.

(In your ideal lifestyle) are you planning to earn a living online or off?

Corbett Barr

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  1. alessiolr

    Hi Corbett
    I’m currently in a restaurant general manager but I follow alot of lifestyle design blogs and would really love to take my career online. I’m studying web design at the moment, and could freelance on the net, but I’m also looking to start a business. I’m looking at some of the options out there, and while there are a couple of online business courses by some of the better known bloggers, the decision is still quite a difficult one to make.

  2. I’m planning on earning a living 100% online. I’m focusing on a few niche websites about things I’m interested in, with the income coming from the sale of affiliate products.

  3. Bryant Keefe

    I want to go “online” from my current “offline” work.

  4. Mine is a balance of the two, but I’d like to have less offline work. It’s just less efficient and sometimes limiting.

  5. I am going to try online diverse fields such affiliate marketing, niche building and viral marketing. I do not know how far I can succeed, but I am going to take it as a test for my mettle.

  6. I’d like to do both. Having the offline component would allow me to continue to interact with people face-to-face. I need that in my life. :-)

  7. Embrace the power of ‘And’. :)

    We do a mix of offline and online income generating.

    – Cherie

  8. Both. I find work online, but I tend to do my first draft of writing with a pen and paper. The power of in-person networking is awesome as well.

  9. Online. My business right now is almost all online anyway, designing and building websites. So for the time being, I think I will continue to build that before attempting a more passive income.

  10. Primarily online for me. I’m interested in diversifying a bit — a blog, an online directory with advertising income, niche sites maybe, etc.

  11. My business now is a mix. I am hoping to make it 100% online, but I think that the best profits will still come from real connections with real customers. I will have to see how it goes.

  12. Both. My primary web development and sysadmin work is entirely online, but I’ve got a variety of other ideas that are either completely offline or at least have a mixture of on/offline components.

    For example, I’m currently starting up a second business which involves producing and selling a specialty food product I’m making. Sales will be online but I’ll be producing and packing product myself as well as shipping orders. Another (unrelated) idea I’m kicking around involves an actual, honest-to-god retail establishment.

    It’s all about diversification.

    • Interesting. It seems like most people try to take an offline business online, but you’re going the opposite way. Is the move about following a particular passion, or is it more about the opportunity?

      • Mostly opportunity, in both cases. In the first case, I noticed a gap in a particular market and think I’ve got a good shot at filling it. Startup costs (both money and time) for this particular venture are fairly low so I’m going to take a shot at it. There’s very little chance it will become my primary source of income but production is quick and easy and it could be a nice revenue stream alongside my other work (not quite passive income, but it does have fairly low time requirements).

        The second idea, which is pretty much just talk between my wife and I at this point, was inspired by a business we found out of state that we think would do really well in Portland. Startup costs and time commitments are much higher with this one so we’re still just toying with the idea. It could be good though, and could definitely become a primary income source if it takes off. And once it’s settled in a bit, a few employees could handle most of the day-to-day operations. But we’ll see.

        (comment replies were being spam filtered, so I just noticed this question)

  13. A combination of both. I am a people person and I love to teach and train. I want to convert my teaching into products I can market both on and off line.


  14. Totally offline. I’d rather actually work WITH real, live people in the places I want to live. That’s real involvement in another culture to me.

  15. Currently, I work a 9-5 job, but I hope to be at least supplementing my income with photography! I love traveling and photography/selling online is a perfect fit for that lifestyle.

    I’ve partnered with a fulfillment house that will drop ship prints, mounted prints, posters, puzzles that sort of stuff. I’m currently working on the shopping cart portion of the website (integrating it with the fulfillment house) which is definitely challenging! But at least it’s a fun challenge!

    I just found your site, and so far am loving it! Best of luck to you!


  16. Completely online. It’s been workin’ fairly well for me the past 5 years or so. Now I just have to ramp it up, and make sure I’m working on something I actually care about.

  17. I plan to earn my income both on and offline. Being a dancer I do a lot of teaching in person but it’s not a stable enough income, nor is it often enough money on its own.

    Additionally, just teaching and dancing would get boring to me. I need a variety of inputs and online work is a way to be more intellectually stimulated and connect with people in a different way.

  18. Jen

    Hi Corbett
    I work 4 days a week in my main job (just come down from 5 and hope to decrease as my business grows). My business is coaching and mentoring which is why I needed a website and have started down this road too. In time, I’d like to earn money on line with my website (haven’t really got a clue how to do that yet!) and offline continuing the coaching etc.

    • Hey Jen, that’s cool that you were able to reduce your day job by one day a week. It’s such a great option for those who can negotiate less hours with their current employers. I’m sure people would love to hear more about how you did that if you’re willing to share.

      • I’m not Jen but a few years back I did something similar. I was working full-time at a job I was unhappy with. When review time came along I countered the offer of a pay increase with a work decrease. It was accepted and I began working Monday through Thursday, with three day weekends. Well worth the paltry $5k/year I gave up for it.

  19. Youri

    Hey Corbett,

    My goal is to be a Full-time Martial Arts (I”m now partime) teacher tot interact with my students, and i want to interact with my students / parents of students / love onece of the students / and people in there ‘sphere of influence’ online to serve and make there “self-defense” more then kicking and punching.

    Someone tips?

    Greets Youri

  20. I’ve started building a website with different monetization methods including affiliate marketing, Adsense, network marketing and more. I’m just building credibility so that I can have followers who would trust my products and services.

  21. Julie

    I’m currently working in the HR field offline but have been exploring how to create my own online business. I will also want to find a way to collaborate with others so that I have the social / intellectual interaction. I’ve been exploring blogging, building websites, developing content; and figuring out my niche. I am inspired by your site and how I can re-design my life to have more flexiblity and freedom. Also wanting to connect with others who are doing the same.

  22. My businesses are 95% online but because of the nature of one of my niches, a LOT of my marketing is offline.

  23. Lauren Lizardo


    I’ve been following your site for some time now since reconnecting with our mutual friend Chris M. via FB! Don’t know if you remember me, but I remember you. I’ve meaning to drop a comment because I really enjoy your blog and very much see eye-to-eye with your thoughts. Happily, tomorrow, I’m signing an LOI to purchase an adventure travel business. Fortunately for me, it is a definite AND. I just need to make sure my guides are “kitted” out. Once I officially own the business, I will share more information as I have had a number of professions to ultimately land me where I am now, which is very happy with my life and lifestyle. It seems to be more fodder and inspiration for your blog as well. I would love to contribute somehow.

    At any rate, looks like you are living it up and that’s is fantastic. If you ever find yourself in Tahoe, please drop me a line. I’d love to host you and your wife for a meal or if you are game, some time on the slopes.

    Take care!

    • Hey Lauren! Yes, of course I remember you. It’s been a long time! Thanks for dropping the note. I’ll send you an email to follow up. And yes, we would all love to hear more about your new business, and the path you’ve taken so far.

  24. I make money online via adsense, affiliates, and ebook sales.

  25. Eventually I want to earn the majority of my living online. I actually enjoy working with people face to face so I still want to keep at least a part time job just for the social aspect. So basically I want to eventually switch my current situation. :)

  26. jen

    Hi again Corbett,
    I was able to go down to 4 days really from managing our money well. Also my coaching is bringing in some money.
    It has been great, giving me more time to pursue my other interests and get used to managing my own time too.
    Thanks Jen

  27. Scalable online ventures, fueling unrestrained offline experience. Online creates enables serious time leverage and potential for totally disproportionate ratio of time invested vs. income produced. Life’s too short to be valued by the hour. Good conversation topic Corbett.

  28. Totally online for the last 3 years, but I do miss that human contact, especially as I used to work in close teams. But you can’t have it all (or can you?)

  29. I agree with Modernape, I really do miss human contact.

    The last job I was proud of was working for a couple of websites that as a content writer in which I had to write content for a more risk’ay culture. I thought it was an awesome gig until my articles were coming in faster than the website was being produced.

    I don’t live off anything now. However, I’m working on acquainting myself with blogs to find a way to make a living online.


  30. I work for schlumberger to compliment my earnings online. This summer hopefully I’ll be ready to move out of the country somewhere. That’s the goal to work on my own time while I travel.

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